Jeremiah 9:23-24

23 Thus says the LORD: 1"Let not the wise man boast in his wisdom, let not the mighty man boast in his might, let not the rich man boast in his riches,
24 but 2let him who boasts boast in this, that he understands and knows me, that I am the LORD who practices steadfast love, justice, and righteousness in the earth. 3For in these things I delight, declares the LORD."

Jeremiah 9:23-24 Meaning and Commentary

INTRODUCTION TO JEREMIAH 9

This chapter is a continuation of the judgments of God upon the Jews for their sins and transgressions herein mentioned; illustrated by the lamentation of the prophet; by calling for the mourning women, and upon other women that had lost their husbands or children, with an intimation that none of any rank and class should escape. The prophet is introduced mourning over the destruction of his people, Jer 9:1, and as uneasy at his stay with them, because of their uncleanness, treachery, lying, unfaithfulness, and deceit, Jer 9:2-6, wherefore the Lord threatens to melt and try them; and for their deceitfulness particularly to visit them, and avenge himself on them, Jer 9:7-9, the destruction is described by the desolation of the mountains and habitations of the wilderness; they being so burnt up, that there were neither grass upon them, nor beasts nor birds to be seen or heard about them; and of Jerusalem, and the cities of Judah, so that there was no inhabitant in them, Jer 9:10,11, upon which a wise man is inquired after, to give the true reason of all this, Jer 9:12 but none appearing, the Lord gives it himself; which were their disobedience to his law, and their worship of idols, following the imagination of their own hearts, Jer 9:13,14 wherefore they are threatened to be fed with wormwood and gall; to be scattered among the nations, and a sword sent after them to their utter consumption, Jer 9:15,16, hence, for the certainty of it, mourning women are ordered to be called for in haste, to assist them in their mourning, on account of their distress, Jer 9:17-19, and such as were mothers of children are bid to teach their daughters and neighbours lamentation, because of the children and young men cut off by death, and for the carcasses of men that should fall as dung in the field, and as the handful after the harvestman, Jer 9:20-22, and it is suggested that none should escape; not the wise man by any art or cunning he was master of; nor the strong man by his strength; nor the rich man by his riches; and therefore ought not either of them to glory in these things, but in the Lord, as exercising lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness in the earth, Jer 9:23,24, and the chapter is concluded with a strong asseveration, that the wicked, both circumcised and uncircumcised, should be punished, Jer 9:25,26.

Jeremiah 9:23-24 In-Context

21 For death has come up into our windows; it has entered our palaces, cutting off the children from the streets and the young men from the squares.
22 Speak, "Thus declares the LORD: 'The dead bodies of men shall fall like dung upon the open field, like sheaves after the reaper, and none shall gather them.'"
23 Thus says the LORD: "Let not the wise man boast in his wisdom, let not the mighty man boast in his might, let not the rich man boast in his riches,
24 but let him who boasts boast in this, that he understands and knows me, that I am the LORD who practices steadfast love, justice, and righteousness in the earth. For in these things I delight, declares the LORD."
25 "Behold, the days are coming, declares the LORD, when I will punish all those who are circumcised merely in the flesh--
26 Egypt, Judah, Edom, the sons of Ammon, Moab, and all who dwell in the desert who cut the corners of their hair, for all these nations are uncircumcised, and all the house of Israel are uncircumcised in heart."

Cross References 3

  • 1. Proverbs 3:5; Proverbs 21:30; Ecclesiastes 9:11
  • 2. [Psalms 34:2; 1 Corinthians 1:31; 2 Corinthians 10:17]
  • 3. [Micah 6:8; Micah 7:18]